Lake Minnewanka, Banff National Park
Sean Maynard Photo

20 Min: Meditation – formal seated practice
30 Min: Cardio – riding my stationary bike
81 Min: Asana
Study, reading, contemplation. Still reading Matthew Remski’s Threads of Yoga as well as Yogic Teachings of Jesus. 

Contemplation: Pratipaksa Bhavanam

Vitarka badhane pratipaksha bhavanam.
“When disturbed by negative thoughts, opposite [positive]
ones should be thought of. This is pratipaksha bhavana.”
–Sutra 2.33

After yesterday, I took the advice of a friend that echoes Sutra 2.33. My contemplation was on Samskaras – imprints left on the psyche from prior experience – and how they can be triggered by what we choose to let into our consciousness. Today, I chose uplifting music while I rode my bike it made a huge difference – as did the drop-back backbends!


Opening Sequence (24 Minutes)
1 Min/Side: Pigeon Prep hip stretch
1 Min/Side: Pigeon Prep quad stretch
1 Min/Side: Hanumanasana (splits) – any hamstring stretch is good
1 Min/Side: Hanumanasana (splits) with quad stretch
5 Min: Supta Virasana (reclining hero pose) – or you can do Virasana, sitting between heels
1 Min: Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Dog)
1 Min: Adho Mukha Vrksasana (Hand Stand)
1 Min: Pincha Mayurasana (Forearm Balance)
8 Min: Sirsasana 1 (Headstand 1) – 3 Min. on the head stander doing variations; 5 Min. regular head stand holding steady

Core Strengthening Sequence (10 Minutes)
Adho Mukha Svanasana
10 X: Plank to Chatturanga Dandasana (push ups!) – noticing a bit of tone in my arms!
Adho Mukha Svanasana – jump through to Uttanasana
10 X: Straight sit-ups – knees bent, head and neck supported, go slow!
10 X: Alternating sit-ups – to each side, go slow!
10 X: Urdhva Prasarita Padasana – lie on back, arms on floor above head, legs point up – raise and lower legs 10 times.
10 breaths: Dandasana
10 breaths: Ardha Navasana – (half boat pose) – knees bent
10 breaths: Navasana (boat pose) straight legs, holding backs of knees
10 breaths: Navasana with arms level with ground
10 breaths: Navasana with hands behind head

Back Bend Sequence (30 Minutes)
2 Min/Side: Laying over roll (felt pad or blanket) perpendicular to spine – with twist
Black Strap Stretch Series – hand fold variation with strap under upper thoracic spine
• 3 X Setubandhasana
• 3 X arms vertical to overhead plane – lift pelvis to Setubandhasana then lower down
3 Min: Lying over lumbar roll – Thick roll under lumbar – relax over roll, releasing sit bones toward floor to traction lumbar spine
Adho Mukha Vrksasana – Hand Stand with back bend at wall
Pincha Mayurasana – Forearm Balance with back bend at wall
Vrschasana – Scorpion Pose from Hand Stand
Vrschasana – Scorpion Pose from Forearm Balance
Standing Back Bend with drop back to wall X 10
Urdhva Dhanurasana X 5 – (Upward Facing Bow) full back bend with push up from floor moving chest to wall
Urdhva Dhanurasana X 8 – drop back from standing – also worked on standing back up again

Closing Sequence (17 Minutes)
1 Min: Halasana (Plough) holding steady to open upper back
10 Min: Salamba Sarvangasana (shoulder stand) 3 min. holding steady; 7 min with variations
1 Min: Halasana
5 Min: Savasana!